Government • 28 January, 2020

98 Kazakh students are in Wuhan

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Deputy Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Berdibek Saparbayev held a meeting of the Interdepartmental Commission on Preventing the Emergence and Spread of Coronavirus in Kazakhstan on Monday, Jan. 27, 2020.

The commission included the heads of the Ministries of Healthcare, Foreign Affairs, Internal Affairs, Education and Science, Finance, Industry and Infrastructure Development, Culture and Sports, Information and Social Development, the Border Guard Service of the National Security Committee, deputy akims of Almaty, East Kazakhstan, Mangystau, Aktobe regions, the cities of Nur-Sultan and Almaty.

“In China, more than 2,700 cases of coronavirus were reported, 80 people died. Fifty cases of infection have already been registered in the world. In accordance with the instruction of the Head of State, the Government took protective measures, developed an appropriate action plan,” said the deputy prime minister.

The meeting addressed issues of strengthening sanitary and epidemiological control at the border, establishing surveillance at the place of residence for all those who are from the PRC, ensuring the readiness of medical organizations and workers, suspending the 72-hour visa-free stay in the Republic of Kazakhstan for transit passengers from China, and others.

The issues of evacuation of citizens of Kazakhstan located in the city of Wuhan were also discussed.

According to First Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Shahrat Nuryshev, there are currently 98 Kazakh students in Wuhan. Diplomats keep in touch with them and work out issues of their evacuation with the Chinese Foreign Ministry. The Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan in the PRC has opened a hot line, organized round-the-clock duty. At the same time, the Chinese side has not yet allowed any state to export its citizens.

In his turn, the Minister of Healthcare Yelzhan Birtanov emphasized that since Jan. 6, 2020, the sanitary-epidemiological services have been working in an intensive mode.

“About 20 thousand people were examined at checkpoints across the border with China. All of them are monitored and will be registered for 14 days. We will also keep track of all newcomers. Trainings have been conducted, a call center has been opened, reserve hospitals for quarantine with 4,780 beds have been prepared. Calculations are being made on the additional needs of medical devices and preparations,” the minister said.

Summing up the discussion, Berdibek Saparbayev instructed the Ministries of Healthcare and Information and Social Development on a daily basis to conduct outreach to the population. Similar work at the regional level should be carried out by akimats of regions and cities.

“All responsible state bodies need to ensure effective interaction and rigorous implementation of the Action Plan. To date, no cases have been reported in Kazakhstan, but we must be prepared to respond quickly if necessary. The Ministry of Healthcare and local executive bodies need to provide additional forces and equipment, including personal protective equipment, medicines and medical facilities,” concluded the deputy prime minister.

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